Nicolet Law Accident and Injury Lawyers
 Free Consultations | Calls Answered 24/7 
Nicolet Law Accident and Injury Lawyers

Built on Family.
Focused on Helping.
Dedicated to Winning.

We win or you don’t pay
500 ★★★★★ reviews

Nicolet Law office
SERVING WI & MN | Calls Answered 24/7 | Free Consultations 866-663-8774

10 Common Rear-End Collision Injuries

Injured? Get Nicolet.
Free case evaluation

10 Common Rear-End Collision Injuries

Almost 2 million rear-end collisions occur on U.S. roads each year. Many of these accidents lead to severe or fatal injuries that devastate families. Others result in minor injuries that take just a few days or weeks to heal.

Here are ten of the most common rear-end collision injuries:

attorney for a rear end collision injuries

1. Whiplash

Whiplash is a common injury in rear-end collisions. The force of the accident impact can cause a violent, sudden movement of the head and neck, and the resulting injury can be severe. To make matters worse, rear-end collisions often take drivers by surprise, so they have no time to brace for the impact. The head and neck muscles are more relaxed, so they move more violently.

It can take months or even years to recover from a serious whiplash injury. More than half of people who experience whiplash have pain and discomfort lasting more than a year. There have been studies conducted that up to 42 percent of whiplash injuries result in permanent discomfort and pain.

2. Brain Injuries

In rear-end collisions, the force of the impact can propel drivers and passengers forward and into the dashboard or steering wheel. Even in a minor collision, head injuries can occur. Doctors should treat them immediately.

Even if the airbags deploy correctly, a person’s head can still hit the dashboard or objects can even impale it.

Injured victims may experience:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Bruising or swelling
  • Cognitive impairment

Unfortunately, the symptoms of a brain injury can take days or even weeks to appear. For this reason, it’s crucial to seek medical attention as soon as possible after a rear-end collision—especially if you hit your head on the dashboard or anything else in the vehicle.

3. Arm and Wrist Injuries

When accidents occur, drivers usually have their hands on the steering wheel. It’s natural to grip the steering wheel tightly when bracing for impact, but this can actually increase the risk of injury to the arm or wrist.

It’s not uncommon for drivers or even passengers to suffer wrist fractures or even shoulder injuries in a rear-end collision.

4. Spinal Cord Injuries

Violent movement in the head or neck can cause a spinal injury. In severe cases, spinal cord injuries can lead to permanent paralysis. According to research from the CDC, spinal cord injuries are the leading cause of paralysis in the U.S.

If the injury affects the cervical spine (just below the neck), the injured victim may lose function in both the arms and legs.

Spinal cord injuries are serious and require immediate medical care. Even with prompt care, recovery can take months or years. Some victims never recover or return to work. These injuries can require costly lifelong care and rehabilitation. Emotional trauma is also common with spinal cord injuries, as victims must come to grips with their new lives.

5. Back Strains and Sprains

Rear-end collisions can injure the tendons and muscles in the back. If the impact causes a vehicle occupant to twist or contort, they can strain or sprain their back.

Both types of injuries can cause:

  • Severe pain
  • Muscle cramps
  • Reduced range of motion

Recovery can take several weeks (sometimes much, much longer), and the sufferer may be unable to return to work right away. In addition, inactivity during recovery can cause the sufferer to lose muscle strength or gain weight.

6. Facial Disfigurement

Facial injuries are common in rear-end collisions and, in severe cases, these injuries can cause permanent disfigurement or scarring.

Disfigurement and scarring can affect the victim’s self-confidence, but it can also lead to long-term medical issues. For example, if a vehicle occupant’s head strikes an object in the vehicle, they may be left with lifelong vision or eye problems. Injuries that affect the jaw or nose can also have long-term effects.

7. Compression Fracture

When a vehicle hits another from behind, the impact can cause part of the spine to collapse. This is a compression fracture, typically affecting the mid-back.

Along with severe pain, a compression fracture can cause deformity and even loss of height. Recovery can take several months, but the process can be even longer if surgery is required.

Even in seemingly minor fender-benders, drivers and passengers should seek medical attention. Some common rear-end collision injuries take hours or days to manifest.

8. Slipped or Herniated Disc

Back and spinal injuries are common in rear-end collisions, including slipped or herniated discs.

Discs are the rubbery cushions that sit between the vertebrae in your spine. These cushions have soft cores at the center. Injuries can tear through your discs and leave the soft core exposed. This is called a slipped or herniated disc.

For some people, a slipped disc doesn’t cause any symptoms. For others, the pain can be severe.

Herniated discs can also cause:

  • Pain in the arms or legs
  • Muscle weakness
  • Tingling or numbness

Surgery may need to treat a slipped disc in severe cases.

9. Spinal Stenosis

Some rear-end collision injuries, like spinal stenosis, aren’t a direct result of the accident. Fractures or dislocations in the spine can cause narrowing of the bone that protects your nerves and spinal cord. That narrowing effect can put pressure on the nerves and even cause nerve damage.

Spinal stenosis can cause severe pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness.

10. Burns, Lacerations, and Fractures

A rear-end collision may burn, fracture, or lacerate occupants. If the impact causes a fire or explosion, the driver and passengers may suffer severe burns and scars. In some cases, injuries are fatal.

Even in minor accidents, glass can shatter, and metal parts may be twisted and exposed. Both can cause deep lacerations that may lead to extensive blood loss. Some people experience lifelong nerve damage because of these injuries.

If the frame of the vehicle bends or twists, it can pin or compress limbs, leading to severe injuries.

Hire An Experience Rear-End Collision Lawyer After An Accident

Rear-end collisions can cause a wide range of injuries, many of which are severe. Even if the accident appears minor, drivers should still seek medical attention right away. Some injury symptoms can take days or weeks to manifest.

If you or a loved one has suffered one of these rear-end collision injuries, an attorney can help you understand your rights and help you pursue compensation for damages.



Result with Nicolet Law 


Offer before Nicolet Law


Result with Nicolet Law 


Offer before Nicolet Law


Result with Nicolet Law 


Offer before Nicolet Law
More Than
Million recovered for our clients
5 star reviews
More Than
years in business


Result with Nicolet Law 


Offer before Nicolet Law
$0.00 - denial*


Result with Nicolet Law 


Offer before Nicolet Law


Result with Nicolet Law 


Offer before Nicolet Law
YouTube video

What our clients say about us

powered by BirdEye
more testimonials

Awards & Recognitions

Nicolet Law Office is honored to have been nominated for numerous awards for excellence in service and client satisfaction. Our attorneys have appeared in such prestigious lists as Top 40 Under 40 and Rising Stars. While we’re thankful to have the support of industry peers and independent third-party organizations, nothing beats the feeling of gratitude we share with clients when we can make a positive impact on their lives.

From our blog


Contact us today to request a free case evaluation with a dedicated local attorney. With twelve convenient office locations throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin, accessing award-winning legal services has never been easier. If you have a medical condition that prevents you from traveling, we would be happy to meet you at your home or schedule a private virtual consultation.


Tell us about your case

We’ll review your case details and contact you with an action plan.
Fields marked with an * are required
Brief description of your legal issue.
Disclaimer: The use of the internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

13 locations in Wisconsin and Minnesota to serve you

Wisconsin State Icon

Wisconsin Locations:

402 Graham Ave.
Suite 305
Eau Claire, WI 54701

Phone: (715) 835-5959
Map & Directions

2300 Riverside Dr,
Suite 105
Green Bay, WI 54301
Phone: (920)-504-3655
Map & Directions

517 2nd Street
Unit #205
Hudson, WI 54016

Phone: 715-226-6158
Map & Directions

205 5th Avenue S,
Suite 209,
La Crosse, WI 54601

Phone: 608-527-0876
Map & Directions

2790 S. Fulton
Milwaukee, WI 53207
Phone: (414)-260-2220
Map & Directions

1500 Madison Ave.
Suite 220
New Richmond, WI 54017

Phone: 715-226-6164
Map & Directions

337 North Main Street
Rice Lake, WI 54868

Phone: (715) 790-1114
Map & Directions

215 S 2nd St #20
River Falls, WI 54022

Phone: (715) 716-5869
Map & Directions

1200 Tower Ave.
Superior, WI 54880

Phone: (715) 718-2969
Map & Directions

408 3rd Street
Suite 303
Wausau, WI 54403

Phone: (715) 716-5092
Map & Directions

Minnesota State Icon

Minnesota Locations:

306 West Superior Street,
Suite 606 West
Duluth, MN 55802

Phone: (218) 729-0628
Map & Directions

Howard Court Bldg.
302 Howard Street, Suite 123
Hibbing, MN 55746

Phone: 218-217-0659
Map & Directions

23 - 4th Street SE
Suite #217
Minneapolis, MN 55414
Phone: (612) 688-4459
Map & Directions

724 Bielenberg Drive
Suite 126
Woodbury, MN 55125

Phone: (651) 815-0017
Map & Directions

Wisconsin and Minnesota’s Local Award-Winning Injury and Disability 
© 2022 Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers, S.C. All Rights Reserved.
If we do not get you a recovery in your case, you will not be responsible for any attorney fees, but you still may be responsible for costs expended on your behalf, such as filing fees, medical records, etc.
crosschevron-down linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram